Cariboo North MLA Coralee Oakes congratulated the Island Mountain Arts Society for receiving $7,750 in B.C. Arts Council grants to assist in funding the Toni Onley Artists’ Project for Professional and Emerging Artists.

In honour of B.C. artist Toni Onley, this program provides 20 emerging artists nine days of intensive studio experience and mentorship from world renowned artists from Canada and the United States at the Island Mountain Arts Society in Wells. Project participants will showcase their work to the public at the Island Mountain Arts Gallery at the conclusion of the program.

As a result of the April and May adjudications, the B.C. Arts Council announced almost $6.25 million in funding to 166 arts and culture organizations or individuals throughout the province.

The funding comes from a record-high $24 million the B.C. Arts Council received from the provincial government to support artists, arts activities and culture in the 2013-14 fiscal year.

As B.C.’s lead agency for arts funding and development, the B.C. Arts Council enlists the expertise of British Columbia’s artists to evaluate grant applications through a peer review process independent of government.

Established in 1995, the B.C. Arts Council consults with the arts and culture community to develop policies, programs and strategic priorities for the sector. Last year, the Council approved more than 1,000 grants in over 200 communities in every region of the province.